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St. John's and Arizona to square off in Coaches vs. Cancer Classic

The 2K Sports Classic revealed Wednesday that the Arizona Wildcats will face the St. John's Red Storm in the second semifinal game of the Coaches vs. Cancer tournament on Nov. 17 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

For a time, we've know the participants -- in the other bracket, the Mississippi State Bulldogs are pitted against the Texas A&M Aggies the same day. That game tips at 7 p.m. EST with the Wildcats and Red Storm capping the evening. The next day, the losers' consolation game begins at 4:30 p.m. EST with the championship game following. All will air on ESPN2.

What's the most titillating storyline? Oddly enough, the semifinal game of Arizona and St. John's might be the best of them all. Each is coming off a season defined by a resurgence in the hoops programs and each has an incoming recruiting class rivaled in the college basketball world by few. Rivals lists St. John's class as the No. 3 overall group and Arizona at No. 4.

The youthful Johnnies have a ridiculous nine newcomers this upcoming season with center Norvel Pelle (No. 23 overall) leading the way with D'Angelo Harrison (No. 40 overall), Maurice Harkless (No. 41 overall) and Dominique Pointer (No. 44) being Top-50 players, according to Rivals (though God's Gift Achiuwa has, by far, the best name).

Of course, the Wildcats have a smaller but more renowned group of freshman. Both point guard Josiah Turner and shooting guard Nick Johnson are Top-20 players, with forwards Angelo Chol and Sidiki Johnson both Top-100 prospects.

It'll be a battle of youngsters, an early-season introspective look at lots of potential NBA-level talent. Or, will the Arizona veterans make up for the difference?